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Capcom Announces Unreplayable Game 535

Hatta writes "Resident Evil: Mercenaries 3D for the Nintendo 3DS will be an experience that can be completed once per customer. Using a single, unwipable save slot Capcom ensures that a second hand customer gets a second rate experience. If you buy this game used, you will be stuck with the previous owner's progress, unable to start the game fresh."
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Capcom Announces Unreplayable Game

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  • First! (Score:5, Funny)

    by Xerotope ( 777662 ) on Tuesday June 28, 2011 @08:15AM (#36595220)
    Everybody else must continue this comment.
    • Re:First! (Score:5, Insightful)

      by DemoLiter3 ( 704469 ) on Tuesday June 28, 2011 @09:03AM (#36595854) Homepage
      You wouldn't buy a used car...
    • Re:First! (Score:4, Insightful)

      by drinkypoo ( 153816 ) <martin.espinoza@gmail.com> on Tuesday June 28, 2011 @09:14AM (#36596016) Homepage Journal

      I read it as "unplayable" game the first time. Might as well be true. Capcom is dead to me anyway, I'm over arcade gaming and they don't do anything else competently.

      • by teslar ( 706653 )

        I read it as "unplayable" game the first time. Might as well be true

        To be fair, it only says that the game cannot be reset. I suppose it is still possible that it can be played as many times as one wants, just that once you start, there's no going back till you finish. So what it means for the second-hand market is probably that it would suck if you buy a partially played game since there's no way for you to start from scratch until you completed it. But it's not unplayable as such. Also, I imagine the s

        • by KDR_11k ( 778916 )

          It's a highscore-style game with progressive unlocks, every game starts from the same position but there's no way to undo the unlocks and give second hand owners a proper progression through the game's features. Whether that's a bad thing is debatable but imagine being the guy ending up with Gamestop's employee tested copy.

        • I wouldn't be so sure of that, it certainly doesn't read like that to me.

          Knowing modern DRM, that "simple fix" would likely destroy the game.

          If more companies do this, I suspect the result will be a large market for DS card readers, that you can use to wipe the save game. They'd also work well for rewriting cards too, I'm sure.

          Capcom better hope this "brilliant" idea doesn't catch on. Pirates will love it.

        • You can most certainly play the game again. It's not a one and done thing. The only thing the save file will affect is the unlockable content. Meaning if you're the person who enjoys the satisfaction of doing all the tricks to get that extra shotgun, or to unlock that bonus level, you'll need to buy a new copy. The old save file leaves you without much to do except replay the levels and beat the previous owner's high scores., but if you don't care, it shouldn't be that big of a deal to you. Granted I still
    • What if your battery dies in the middle of a save? It could happen by accident. Therefore I must assume one of two things:

      1. Once you finish the game it never saves again (seems most likely) also giving zero replay/after-play value.
      2. Like most cartridge games, if it detects a corrupted save, it deletes the save. Therefore you can work around this "feature" by switching the 3DS off in the middle of a save.

      • Re: (Score:3, Informative)

        by mingot ( 665080 )
        I can't speak for all games, but I am very familiar with the save structure of one particular series, and each game in this series stores a backup of the save file and will always revert if one of them is corrupt. I would guess that this is not the only series where the developers take this approach.
    • Re:First! (Score:4, Informative)

      by glassware ( 195317 ) on Tuesday June 28, 2011 @10:04AM (#36596750) Homepage Journal

      A more nuanced description of the save game system is here:
      http://gamasutra.com/view/news/35476/Capcom_Used_Sales_Not_A_Factor_In_The_Mercenaries_Save_System.php [gamasutra.com]

      Just keep in mind this isn't an RPG, where saved data prevents you from seeing the beginning. This is a shooter game where your high scores and unlocks are permanently saved to the card. I suppose it's sad that you can't restore everything back to its original locked state and get the pleasure of unlocking each item individually, but I doubt it's as bad as everyone fears.

  • by Quantus347 ( 1220456 ) on Tuesday June 28, 2011 @08:15AM (#36595222)
    And I thought the childhood fights over the Zelda save slots were bad...
    • Re:The Bickering (Score:5, Informative)

      by Tharsman ( 1364603 ) on Tuesday June 28, 2011 @10:35AM (#36597198)

      One important thing missing from the summary:

      This is an arcade game were the save file only keeps high scores and unlocked content, similar to unlocking characters in a Street Fighter game.

      Although some may prefer to unlock everything themselves, I can also see many would love to buy a used and fully u locked copy of the game over a new one.

      This instance of the feature does not deserve any real doom crying.

  • by drolli ( 522659 ) on Tuesday June 28, 2011 @08:16AM (#36595234) Journal

    Would the game design allow any substantial choices, then this method would not make sense for the first owner. On the other hand, in this way no first owner can actually experience by himself how limited the game may be in choices. Should actually reduce the production cost. But may make the experience more like watching a movie. So i hope the price is similar to going to cinema.

    • Re: (Score:3, Insightful)

      by rbrausse ( 1319883 )

      not only linear but recognized as rather boring by Capcom - they believe the feature "replayable" will not increase the sales.

    • I don't think there's actually a story associated with this game. I believe the game is just a collection of maps in which you complete combat-related challenges. Thus, not being able to reset your save wouldn't have much effect on a single user.
  • by reimero ( 194707 ) on Tuesday June 28, 2011 @08:17AM (#36595238)

    That kind of move is a deal-breaker for me. I don't buy games often, but when I do, this is precisely the sort of thing that puts a game on my "do not ever buy" list. And it puts Capcom firmly on my "do not buy" list.

    • Yep, I agree, Capcom just managed the same for me. Like EA and ubisoft, they've demonstrated that they don't want a penny of mine for the rest of forever.

    • I do buy games often, and enjoyed (most of) the Resident Evil series. Capcom have joined EA, Sony and Ubisoft on my list of companies to avoid at all costs. It's a small list, but that just makes it easy to remember.

      Confirmed lost sales due to shafting the customer: 1, and counting.
      • Capcom have joined EA, Sony and Ubisoft on my list of companies to avoid at all costs.

        A boycott becomes far more difficult when the target is a conglomerate that provides products or services to in multiple industries, including industries producing or distributing goods other than luxury goods. To what extent are you willing to avoid grocery stores that play music by an artist on a Sony Music Entertainment label over their speaker system? Do you avoid the Beatles too? They're published by Sony/ATV Music Publishing, a joint venture of Sony and the Jackson family.

    • by nitehawk214 ( 222219 ) on Tuesday June 28, 2011 @08:57AM (#36595774)

      I don't always buy games, but when I do, I buy from publishers that are not idiots.


    • by Anonymous Coward on Tuesday June 28, 2011 @08:59AM (#36595796)

      "I don't buy games often, but when I do..."

      For a second there I thought this was going to be a joke about "The Most Interesting Gamer In the World"...

      "He drove Desert Bus for a month -- to show that it could be done."
      "He collected every hat in Team Fortress 2 -- but never wore them."
      "He carried the gnome all the way through Half-Life Episode 2 -- without a single saved game."

      "He is... The Most Interesting Gamer In The World."

      "I don't buy games often, but when I do, I don't buy Capcom."
      "Stay frosty, my friends."

    • Actually, there's no end of reasons to put Capcom on your "do not buy" list. For example, they're the only publisher to insist on "always online" authentication for console games (eg. Bionic Commando Rearmed on the PS3). But to be honest, there's a much better reason than that.

      For the last few years, the games they've made have been almost universally shit.

      Time and time again, they take what should be a really fun concept and surgically strip anything that even remotely resembles "fun" from it. I mean, look

      • by ktappe ( 747125 )

        Actually, there's no end of reasons to put Capcom on your "do not buy" list.

        True. Just for the sake of completeness, add to your long list of reasons to avoid them, that they are the iPhone developer who tricked all the tots into spending $100's on Smurfberries. They have no shame whatsoever; nothing to them takes a backseat to immediate profit, not even long-term self-destruction via public shunning.

  • First Sale (Score:5, Insightful)

    by EricWright ( 16803 ) on Tuesday June 28, 2011 @08:17AM (#36595240) Journal

    No, not the doctrine ... this policy just decreases the likelihood of garnering first sales. What a clever plan. If nobody buys the game in the first place, they've effectively wiped out the after-market.


    • by Kjella ( 173770 )

      First sales can always be managed through price. What it effectively means is that they get a cut from every sale, as well as getting more sales because people that grew tired of the game or outgrew it (give it to your kid brother in 5 years?) can't pass it on.

      If you were going to buy it for $60 and resell it to Gamestop for $20 who'd resell it for $30 then Capcom can simply start the new game price at $40 and get the first sale ($60-$20). Then they can drop it to $30 to get the second sale. They now get $7

      • "In no possible way is this bad for them."

        There is the family where three people who want to play the game so it might be worth $20 each for a total of $60. They would only buy a copy then for $20. And the family where only one person wants to play the game and never resell it. They would be willing to pay the full $60. And the family with only one person who wants to play the game and then resell it (where your analysis is right).

        But they can't price it right for all possible situations.

        • I don't know about you, but if I was standing in the store holding 3 copies of a game because I can't share one copy between all of us, I would put them down and walk out. That's really going to drive home just how ridiculous the situation is. Even if I was willing to pay $60 for the game and I knew that's how much 1 copy would cost of it was replayable, it is the principle of the matter. And I'm not one to normally politicize my consumption. I mean, I'll still buy stuff from Apple, Sony, or whatever other
      • That's assuming Gamestop are happy at being cut out of the resale market, which is apparently incredibly lucrative for them. If you're reliant on the store pushing your products to customers, it's a bit of a risk to steal their profitable business right out from under them - I guess it's less of an issue with online stores, I wonder what the online/offline split is for the average game.
      • They'd have to drop it to $5 if they want me to play it at all. I'm not in the habit of playing story based single player games twice. But what if I have to jump up from the game quickly during a cut scene and I miss something?

        No. Even for $5 I wouldn't consider it. Though I'm certain that pirates will find a way around it.

        • Technically, it's on the 3DS, so the answer to your question is "You'd snap the system shut to put it in sleep mode, thus suspending the scene until you return." However, I understand your point and agree.

      • Except all the people who would have paid the full $60 that will now not bother buying the game at all.

        Also, what happened to making games with enough quality to actually play a second time?

        I have bought several games from GOG that I had bought originally a decade ago. It was easier to fork over $10 instead of installing from the original media.

  • by Nidi62 ( 1525137 ) on Tuesday June 28, 2011 @08:17AM (#36595244)
    And they said new games were losing all their replay value...
  • Second-hand??? (Score:5, Insightful)

    by pla ( 258480 ) on Tuesday June 28, 2011 @08:18AM (#36595252) Journal
    What if, uh, the original owner wants to start fresh?

    Dear CapCom: DIAF.

    • Re:Second-hand??? (Score:5, Insightful)

      by uncanny ( 954868 ) on Tuesday June 28, 2011 @08:20AM (#36595286)
      What do they care? they already have your money!
      • What do they care? they already have your money!

        Well, they don't and they will not have.

        Fortunately, as others pointed out, they announced this beforehand. Whoever buys this knows he's been warned.

    • Indeed. This is discrimination. We who have no long-time memory also have rights!
    • Resident Evil games have always been designed for replay. You can restart from the beginning, or replay any level, at any time. As you progress, you get to start the levels with all the equipment you've acquired. So, original owners will be able to start over any time they wish. The difference is that they won't be able to grind their way into the best weapons and outfits a second time.

    • whose only feature is an additional save game slot?

  • Boycott it (Score:5, Insightful)

    by Antony-Kyre ( 807195 ) on Tuesday June 28, 2011 @08:19AM (#36595268)

    Do not support these types of games.

    I don't care if this is device-specific or if it's the second time the original person plays it. Just say no.

  • Oh the irony (Score:5, Insightful)

    by Anonymous Coward on Tuesday June 28, 2011 @08:20AM (#36595272)

    Second hand customers will get a second rate experience, yet pirates will get an even better experience than the original customer since they will be able to manage their saves from the flashcard.

    Good job, Capcom.

  • by Sparx139 ( 1460489 ) on Tuesday June 28, 2011 @08:21AM (#36595290)
    Fuck. That. Shit.
  • I am sure they are going to sale a lot of them. Even as a first hand customer this will limit the interest of the game.
  • The game storyline can only be a tragedy. Though you might end up saving the world (or an alien world), you must sacrifice yourself and it's the only endgame possible. Unless the game happens to be Kobayashi Maru, and your name is James Tiberius Kirk.

    It's like when I was younger and I tried playing DOOM without dying, all the way through, all my waking hours, in ultraviolent skill level.

  • The only thing I can think of is that someone from the MPAA/RIAA is using Capcom as a test-bed for their new DRM scheme.
  • Hi,

    there seems to be a campaign against used games in progress. In a press release yesterday, a game company called the sale of used games "legalized theft" and decried the moral of such actions.

    Another company accused sellers of used games that they would be leeching their intelectual property by keeping all sales profits (from the sale of used games) for themselves and giving none to the devs.

    I sit here and watch in wonder, how the gaming industrie is alienating it's main source of income. There must be a

  • ...its a feature!!!
  • by Kamiza Ikioi ( 893310 ) on Tuesday June 28, 2011 @08:29AM (#36595388)

    "If you buy this game..."

    Nuff said.

  • Either someone hacks this thing and resets it, or it will not sell at all.

    IMHO not the brightest idea to have..

  • This would be fair, if i get a refund of 50% if i only finished 50% of the game (and have the save game as proof).

    The current deal is: i (or someone else) can play the game again, but you get 100% of the money even if i don't finish the game.

    They want to cancel this deal, fine with me. But then i want my money back on games which don't hold up to my expectations and don't get played.

    CU, Martin

  • So ... they're marketing an intentional, crippling flaw in the product as a "feature"? Way to go. This beats marketing unintentional bugs as "hidden features" a thousand times over.
  • I guess you will be able to replay the "campaign" in the game, but stuff like boni you earned or high scores will always stay with the game. Still bad enough, but probably not what most people here are assuming.

  • .... to prevent this sort of crap. That would be like letting someone buy a DVD of a movie and only get to watch it once. Or purchasing a book and only being able to read it once. Oh you want to go back and re-read a section because you put the book down for too long? NOOOO. You don't have permission. That part of the book is deleted....

    Why would any company shoot themselves in the foot like that? And what is full price? If a play once game is anything over $1 per play, Fuck it, it's not worth it.

  • Assuming this report is accurate (who knows what details have been left out, journalism these days), this even denies the original purchaser a second playthrough. What if you want to play it again on a harder difficulties, or with a different play style? Nope, you're screwed buddy.

    FFS. If companies are going to disrespect their customers like this, they shouldn't be surprised when the lack of respect goes both ways (i.e. pirating).

    • Oh please, spare me your moral rhetoric.

      Pirates are going to pirate no matter what the circumstances. They don't give a shit about copyrights.

      They are nothing but cheapskates.

  • Most games nowadays have such a terrible replay value, it might as well not have any at all anyways. Also, it's been mentioned numerous times what kills console game profits is buying used games, as opposed to pirating. Reason being that the video game stores make all the money off selling used games and the video game company doesn't see a dime off of it. As a consumer, why WOULDN'T you buy the used version of the game if you can save five bucks for the exact same thing, with a seven day return policy? Ex
    • > Also, it's been mentioned numerous times what kills console game profits is buying used games, as opposed to pirating.

      It's been mentioned, and debunked. The game industry assumes two things that are completely wrong:

      1. People who buy 50$ games today will still buy a 50$ game tomorrow - even if recouping 15$ by reselling it afterwards is impossible then.

      2. People who buy a 20$ used game today will buy the game at full price tomorrow if that's all that's available.

      Used game stores ensure fair pricing of

  • Most, if not all, of the resident evil series plays out a single chain of events, so i dont think theres much replay value in it. That said, would I pick it up to blast some zombies out of boredom?......maybe so. I didnt RTFA, but if this game is toast after the credits roll thats a bunch of bullshit for something i've purchased and "own."

    Will other publishers follow in Capcom's footsteps to take a stand against the lucrative market of used video games?

    Game sales would take a dive if a bunch of publishers jumped onboard here; especially if games were to remain at current prices. Im not going to spend $60 for a game I pla

  • I dont own a modern games console, i have set one up and was not that impressed lets just say Sony and Microsoft are not options either. Anyhow the new wii looks interesting but stunts like this make me doubt my idea to buy a Nintendo console which i can live without.

    Yes its a different console but what can be done can also be done in another.

  • If they sell it for more, they can keep it. This also means the game has zero replay value.

    These people are barking up the wrong tree. Copyright infringement and sale of second hand games are not the problems they are facing. The problems are lack of ideas, lack of storytelling, bad interfaces, focus on graphics instead of the game, too little game for too much money and plain, old-fashioned corporate greed.

    • by guruevi ( 827432 )

      For $10 you can buy plenty a indie game that is going to be endlessly more fun and probably on-par or exceeding the graphics of this Nintendo game. Look at the Humble Indie Bundle or The IndieGamesPack (http://www.indiegamespack.com/). For $10 you can get 6 games.

  • Nintendo: Evil Mercenaries 3D

  • And here I thought we had seen every way in which they could make pirates have a better experience than customers.

    But no, they went and invented a new way.

    See, pirates use flash carts and have full access to wipe save data at any time... Or back it up, or alter it... But a normal customer usually has to rely on the game to provide any of those functions.

    They may have destroyed the aftermarket for this game, but I think they may be throwing the baby out with the bathwater.

  • Yet another reason to prefer emulators: you can delete or move the SRAM save file, effectively resetting the game, OR giving you multiple save slots. Too bad there's no playable 3DS emulator out yet.
  • I predict people looking for a bargain will download the warez version when they can't find it in the used game section, though why anyone would want to play RE in the first place is beyond me. What a shitty series.

It is not for me to attempt to fathom the inscrutable workings of Providence. -- The Earl of Birkenhead